Fire training centre approved

A new training facility will allow Summerland firefighters to train in the community rather than out of town.

A new training facility will allow Summerland firefighters to train in the community rather than out of town.

The facility will be constructed at a site on Shale Avenue. It will include a training building, a classroom and a training prop area.

“We’re restricted by the facilities we use to train in,” Fire Chief Glenn Noble said. “We want to move our training to a higher standard.”

The Summerland Fire Department has three career firefighters and 28 auxiliary firefighters. All are required to take regular training. Noble said provincial training requirements are expected to increase significantly.

Mayor Janice Perrino said the need for a training facility has been discussed for at least two years.

At present, Summerland firefighters must travel to Peachland or Penticton for some of the training exercises. The travel time shortens the time available for training.

“We need something for our members that is here all the time,” Noble said.

Municipal administrator Tom Day said the training facility would allow the firefighters to quickly respond to fires which occur during their training sessions.

Coun. Bruce Hallquist, a former volunteer firefighter, said the training facility would have been appreciated when he was with the fire department.

Coun. Robert Hacking said the proposal approved on Oct. 27 was less expensive than some of the options presented earlier.